Why Are School Buses Always Yellow?: Teaching for Inquiry, PreK-5 / Edition 1

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Deepen young students' natural curiosity and strengthen questioning and thinking skills!

Discover how to use the inquiry process to teach mandated content in preschool and primary classrooms while making learning relevant and lasting for young children, including learners with special needs. The author uses real classroom examples, provides prompts for framing good questions, offers recommendations for Internet resources, and provides techniques to:

  • Introduce inquiry incrementally and systematically
  • Use objects, literature, and students' experiences to stimulate inquiry
  • Help children turn their playful wonderings into deeper questions about content
  • Develop inquiry-based units that incorporate students' queries

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Editorial Reviews

Arlene Sandberg
"The book covers an important topic, one needed to develop thinkers and children's curiosity for the jobs of thetwenty-first century. There are excellent vignettes, stories, and examples from author's viewpoint."
Robert Losee
"This book does a nice job of going through the inquiry process and showing how to make it purposeful for kids."
Denise Metiva Hernandez
"A valuable tool for teachers who are willing to step outside the conventional ways of teaching. The vignettes help the reader make real-life connections to the author’s purpose and ideas."
Rebecca S. Compton
"Great for reflective thinking by both students and practitioners.There are plenty of examples, stories, and the like."
Gail Underwood
"Educators need to reclaim teaching for a purpose. This book can definitely be used as professional development in a school looking for change. It will help teachers who are searching for ways to make education meaningful for students and will also help themmeet district and state mandates."
Greg Keith
"The book’s major strengths are the author's conversational style, the reflective questions that involve the reader, and the opportunities at the end of each chapter that encourage next steps."
The Bookwatch
"Surveys methods for challenging young learners, inviting them to develop inquiry and critical thinking skills. Chapters outline the inquiry process and discuss its importance in classroom management, surveying successes through real classroom examples perfect for teacher applications."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781412957335
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 12/11/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 216
  • Sales rank: 478,907
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Learn more about John Barell's PD offerings

John Barell is Professor Emeritus of Curriculum and Teaching at Montclair State University, Montclair, NJ, and former public school teacher in New York City. For the past several years he has been a consultant for inquiry-based instruction and creation of science/social studies networks at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. For most of his educational career he has worked with schools nationally to foster inquiry, problem-based learning, critical thinking, and reflection. Barell is the author of several books, including Teaching for Thoughtfulness: Strategies to Enhance Intellectual Development (1995, 2nd ed.) and Developing More Curious Minds (2003).

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Table of Contents

About the Author
1. Inquiry Overview
2. "This Is Better Than Recess! ": Why Inquiry Is Important
3. "How Do We Start the Inquiry Process? "
4. "How Do We Plan for Students' Questions? "
5. Developing Units of Instruction: "When Is It Chaos? "
6. "Why Are Mountains Necessary? ": The Nature of Good Questions
7. "How Do We Know They Understand? "
8. Art, Music, and Physical Education
9. "How Do We Involve Parents in Our Inquiries? "
10. Inquiry and Students With Special Needs
11. Professional Development Beyond Our Classrooms

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